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The Museum of Vestigial Desire


tags: displacement published on:

Friendships in this city are fragile and vacuous. Either my friends are never around me or they are there and they are feeling empty. The city is a special weapon. A weapon of mass destruction, maybe. But not really. It is not really mass, maybe mass-less destruction would be more like it. Bodies are left intact, but everything else is distorted. So we can call cities circuit bending machines. The circuit is intact, but the electricity flowing through it is bent, distorted and maimed. So the weaponry of the city streets empty you out cyclically. More like flush you out, finger-tickle your guts to force-puke out.

So friendship cannot be performed across absences and emptiness. It needs to be contained in a label and set to a possibility for sporadic performance. Friends are bodies which are tolerated most of the times because they are sometimes friendly.

In the flat landscape of dry, emotionless circuitry, things get jammed. There is no lubricant, no saline for the transference of vaccines, like spirit-vaccines, nutrition and substance. People remain empty for very long periods of time and then they start wondering about the meaning of life. Times such as these, when the meaning of life is the subject of speculation, people talk quite often of spirituality. They talk of raspberries coated with chocolate sauce in the same way. In exalted ways, in a manner similar to a public relations executive.

But if at these moments if there are friends around, instead of exalted talk there is a comfortable silence. Because friendship is in such short supply, such silences are sorely missed. Friendship is so easily understood as a comfortable silence but that is only one side of it. Let's say the platonic side. The other side is pretty nasty. The other side is where friendship becomes other things. It becomes rivers of blood, quicksand and burnt temple deities all at once. On that other side the nights of faithful friendships bear fruit. Keys of secret chambers in the head are shared. Approximations of the dimensions of eternity are drafted. Sometimes also things go wrong. Pits are dug which are way deeper than the easily-hop-over-them-kinds. Such pits have to be crossed routinely in the life on the other side. So when that happens to you, and you do not easily do things like that, you fall in. On the other side, people make quite a big deal about those who do not make it. The tragedy of those who fall, the ones who didn't make it across the stormy streams of friendship.

Friendship as a fallen fruit is also something. Eating fallen fruit is considered the most ethical way of eating. Neither is there the coarseness of agriculture, nor the cruelty of eating other animals, nor the synthetic techne of the factory. Fallen fruit tastes best, it tastes like a missile. Like something ripe in a projectile sent by the tree to attempt sex. Attempt a continuation of sorts, multiply itself by itself and achieve progeny. Fruits are dropped by trees after filling them with seeds that will eventually take root in the soil. Fallen fruit is the extra friendship, the empty punch in the air. The plate of food after it has been refused repeatedly.

Friends live far away in cities. Only children's friends live nearby and go to the same school. Though where one lives has something to do with which school one goes to, the same is not true for work. I know very few people who refuse well-paying jobs because the workplace is too far away. Every one takes every job. And then the city becomes a city of commuters. Friends now are the people we work with and spend the whole day with. They have nothing to do with where we live. So friendship has hidden within it separation. The feeling that makes meeting a friend feel special has a lot to do with distance and separation. Often there is a temptation to move in with your friends, that is the end or at least the beginning of the end.

Because friends live far away the transportation system had to be created, the telecom networks had to be made.

Because of the nature of friendship we find it difficult to like the people who live near us, out neighbours. Neighbours are never counted as friends, they might have curiosity value like animals in a zoo. But that is about it.

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